We are currently in Bangkok, Thailand on day 5 of our required 15 day state quarantine. Let me catch you up on how we got here.
May 2020 (two months later than planned) we were able to get back to the US to go to our house in Colorado where we had been planning on doing much needed home improvements before renters arrived. When that was finished we realized that we would not be getting back to Thailand as they had shut the country down to anyone wanting/needing to come in. We just didn’t know for how long. Each passing month we thought, next month they will open to our visa…..next month. We had no idea that we would be stuck in the US for a full 12 months!
The time in the US was very productive and has opened up a new opportunity for us to pursue in Thailand. But, that is a whole new blog post that I will not go into at this moment.
So here we are, May 12th almost exactly one year after we left Thailand thinking we would be back in just two short months. Thailand requires travelers to enter Bangkok and stay in one of their 139 state certified quarantine hotels. It’s quite the process getting all the paperwork done in a timely manner so that you can enter the country legally. First there is the visa (if you don’t already have one….ours had expired), then there is the COE (Certificate Of Entry obtained from the consulate that allows you to travel to Thailand), then proof that you have purchased roundtrip tickets and paid for the quarantine hotel, proof of insurance that will provide x amount of $$ to cover you in the event you end up at a hospital with covid. Last is the covid test that must be done within 72 hours of travel and proves negative.
When the country first started this process the quarantine was 15 days with 2 covid tests during your stay and after the first negative test result you were allowed to go outside your room to a public area on hotel premises such as a pool deck or roof top for a limited amount of time. There would also be room service where they would come in and clean your room, change out your towels, sheets, etc. After months of this policy covid numbers got better and so they changed the process to 10 days. Unfortunately, we entered the country two days after they changed the policy back again to 15 days quarantine because Thailand was being hit with their third wave of covid.
Not only do we have a 15 day quarantine but we are no longer allowed to go out of our room for a break, we have to do three covid tests (which are horrible…..they may be finding pleasure in torturing the foreigners) and there is no room cleaning services. Thankfully they did leave us with a good amount of supplies and items such as broom, mop and toilet brush to clean with. We are required to take our temperature with hotel provided thermometers twice a day and text our results in on two different apps. One is the Bangkok hospital app and the other is the nurse on duty at the hotel through the “Line” app.
We are coming to the end of our fifth day and have our second covid test tomorrow morning. NOT excited about that. The only thing great about it is that you get to leave your room for a few minutes. The room is nice, you get what you pay for. We made sure we had a balcony and we rented an elliptical in order to try and keep in shape and not go out of our minds with all the sitting around. The hotel also provided a yoga mat and weights. The food is okay but it’s hard to get gluten free and even harder to stay away from the MSG which we are being affected by. They provided a menu before we left the US and we had to pick all our meals ahead of time. Each day they bring breakfast, lunch and dinner at a set time and leave it outside our door.
All of that being said were are so thankful to even be able to get back into Thailand and are extremely thankful for those who put up with us for so long in the US.
Thank you for reading our blog. If you are wondering, I have moved the Seed of Hope blog to the website and this will now become our personal blog. So for any updates on the dorm and the kids you can go to: http://www.seedofhopethailand.org then click on the “SOH BLOG” tab at the top.
If you have any questions about quarantine, the dorm or anything else shoot me your questions and I will try to answer them.